One of the biggest surprises of the Office for Mac 2011 launch wasn’t directly connected to the launch. Alan Chou, Microsoft’s Senior Category Manager, SEA Emerging Market just happened to have a LG Optimus 7 that he literally just uncrated out of the box. It was so new it still didn’t have a SIM card yet , and being the tech lover that I am I just had to get my grubby mitts on the thing and fondle Microsoft’s latest and greatest for a few minutes.
One of the most striking feature, or non feature, of Windows Phone 7 devices is the lack of custom skins. Alan says that while there’s not going to be manufacturer skins on top of the OS, manufacturers will be able to put custom tiles on the device.
The minimalist design of the UI is nice and pleasant, and the transitions between screens are fast and zippy.
The new OS has heavy XBOX Live integration, and while you won’t be able to play Gears of War on the thing, you’ll at least be able to see your achievements and avatar. There’s also games slated for Windows Phone 7 devices, so gamers on the go can have their fix wherever they are.
Alan also demoed one of the features that the Optimus 7 had – the Panorama Shot. It’s essentially an easy to use panoramic shooting mode where the phone gives users visual cues where to point the 5 megapixel camera to for near perfect panoramic shots.
So that’s it for the Optimus Phone 7. While we’re jonesing to get some real hands on time with Windows Phone 7 devices, realistically we won’t be seeing a lot of them this holiday season as they are still slowly trickling down to launch regions (Alan got his from Singapore).